Thursday, September 01, 2005

My Sacred Ministry

Proving that furious commentors are the best, I give you this nugget from one of the many people who really hates me: "you are no better than St. Blog's version of Wonkette."

And I could receive no better compliment. Ana Maria Cox -- the Wonkette -- is just goregous... And brilliant. And funny. Right up there with the sumptuous Tassie Mary, my darling Vyvienne and the divine Naomi Watts. I'd marry Ana Maria in a heartbeat and we could have goregous blogging children who do truth-tellin' for a living. O, Lord, hear my prayer... and don't you snowflakes hate me because I'm beautiful.

Well, it's 1 September and the Whispers are becoming ever more amplified. June recorded 8,000 visitors on the ticker, July welcomed 14,000 and August wrapped up with a clean 30,000 unique hits. Be afraid -- I've got 15 dinner invites lined up for my next Roman junket.... From a readership of five back in December, this outlet's welcoming between 1,500 and 1,900 revellers a day. And if that doesn't blow my mind, nothing will.

I received a note yesterday from someone who's been with me from the beginning, who's always with me where it counts, one of those rare people whose example of selfless devotion -- even to the point of enduring great suffering and spiritual darkness for the good of others -- is an incarnate witness to what this business is really all about, and how far some of us (myself included) have gotten from where we need to be. As much as it was a reminder of the responsibility I have to make good on the investment and devotion of others, it was also a ray of blessed encouragement that, for all the difficulties and ephemera of this moment, the miracle of inexplicable Providence -- serendipity, if you will -- remains with us still. May each of you be so lucky to have such an instrument of grace in your lives.

But it's a funny thing about this moment that, out of the woodwork, people I've never known or haven't known for a long time are appearing and trying to tell me what to do. If I listened to them all, well, I'd be in a million different places. And who would want that?

But I do appreciate it -- if nothing else, it's served as a clarion call to me of how quick I often am to criticize and nitpick and how slow I often am to affirm. And that's definitely something I need to work on.

I haven't made an appeal in a bit, but with the growing readership I'm compelled to remind everyone that THIS IS WHAT I DO. Period. This blog takes the lion's share of time I could devote to doing PR for strip malls, as I once did, solely because I believe in the value of solid coverage of the Holy See and its importance to the wider world. And I can't do it for free forever -- contrary to popular belief, even Vaticanologists have bills to pay. So if you're able to drop a couple coins in the guitar case (the Donation button is on the right sidebar) to keep me going for the interim and to keep this beloved work alive, it would help immensely, and keep me from selling out to God knows who. (And if anyone can get me an honest gig doing this work, I love you. Speak to me.)

I don't say this anywhere near enough, but I am so grateful to the best, most loyal and kind readership in the world. It sometimes takes a while for me to tackle the e.mails I get, but I have found in corresponding with so many readers the great love they have for their church, the interest they have in its wider life and their desire to see it be as it should -- an instrument of peace, service and communion in the world. Of all the blessings this experience has brought me, that is by far the most cherished one.

And with all that said, let's rock 'n roll.



Blogger John Hearn said...

You better be a good little Rock or you'll be chained to Peggy Noonan in hell! ;^)

1/9/05 19:13  

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